Memorial Park - Land Bridge and Prairie

Houston, TX
(2018-ongoing)
 
The Land Bridge, currently in construction, is found at the heart of Memorial Park, spanning over the park’s most divisive feature, Memorial Drive. The transformative nearly 100-acre project will reunite the north and south sides of the Park by creating a land bridge over the busy throughfare to create a dynamic new community space and enhance recreation opportunities for Park users. This expansion of the existing network of trail systems will fulfill the 2015 Memorial Park Master Plan and the associated 2018 Ten-Year Plan. Native prairie and savannah ecologies as well as a multi-use trail network will span over the road at this location, creating a moment where park users can cross the highway without interacting with traffic and are afforded unmatched vantage points of the Houston urban skyline views. 
 
The prairie restoration, which adjoins the Land Bridge, re-introduces endangered native Gulf Coast prairie species and adds additional wetlands to areas north and south of Memorial Drive. Both prairie and wetlands serve important habitat and storm water management functions, serving as a key part of the Park’s ecological restoration. With a diverse mix of grasses and forbs, the expanded prairie complex will provide visual interest year-round as well as essential habitat for nesting birds and other small animals, reptiles and insects. Ultimately the project aims to restore 45 acres of native coastal prairie, create a new iconic destination for Houston's visitors, improve stormwater management and provide greater safety and connectivity for both humans and animals crossing Memorial Drive. 
 
Completion is projected for late 2022. 
 
Project Partners: Memorial Park Conservancy, Houston Parks and Recreation Department, the Kinder Foundtion, Uptown Development Authority